AGC EMPHASIZES SUSTAINABLE FISCAL PLAN AT LEGISLATIVE FLY-IN
Twenty members of the Associated General Contractors of Alaska attended the annual Legislative Fly-In
Jan. 30-31 in Juneau. The group met with 36 legislators, and AGC board members met with Gov. Bill Walker to communicate the importance of adopting a fiscal plan that includes three elements: budget cuts, use of Permanent Fund earnings and new revenue.
AGC board members met with Gov. Walker; Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott; Department of Revenue Commissioner Sheldon Fisher; and Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development Commissioner Mike Navarre to talk about proposed revenue measures, focusing mainly on the proposed employment tax and the deferred maintenance program that it would fund.
Lawmakers are tasked with passing a fiscal 2019 budget. Some fiscal analysts say if they do not take meaningful steps toward budget reform, budget passage could result in further credit rating downgrades, which would drive up the state’s borrowing costs. Alaska was rated triple-A by the three largest rating agencies as recently as 2015, but all three rating agencies downgraded that rating as oil prices fell and revenue from the robust energy industry failed to keep pace with expenses.
AGC supports passage of a sustainable fiscal plan for Alaska that includes measured cuts in government spending and implementation of a responsible revenue strategy. Failing to act could prove disastrous for the state’s economy.
AGC of Alaska represents more than 650 general and specialty contractors, suppliers, manufacturers and businesses. Construction spending continues to be an important contributor to the overall economic activity in Alaska. Construction spending in 2018 is projected to be $6.6 billion.